The Evolutionary First of May

I've worked in tourism for most of my time here, and I've found that most people under the age of 35 who come to Berlin are coming here for the underground culture or street culture.  For 363 days of the year, they really do struggle to find it, but on the last day of April and first day of May, the entire southeast side of the city magically sheds its pretentious, stylish veneer and the underground breaks through the surface.

You still have to know where to look for open air parties and, in some areas, their underground vibe tends to be diluted or even washed away altogether by the consumerist masses and vendors hawking tacky, overpriced party wares (see also: the MyFest) but the underground can be found fairly easily by anyone just stumbling around town, assuming they stumble far enough. There's a lot of chaff mixed in with the wheat, so to speak, so be persistent until you find it whatever sound or atmosphere you're looking for!

May Day is a day when even the most hardened Berlin capitalists seem to feel the need to share and share alike, so that everyday people can celebrate Berlin in its most authentic party state: raw, unrefined, but always evolving... kind of like an unclaimed lot that hasn't yet been cleared to make way for the developers.

Here are some random examples of parties that I picked up from my feeds. All the below parties parties are free, but you'll pay with legwork and networking to find the best places, so wear comfortable shoes and keep your eyes, ears and mind open.
✪ Freaky 23 kicks off MayDay weekend with Hekate and Spiral Tribe DJs playing at Rauchhaus  in Kreuzberg
 Mongolifiere Libere open air party with an array of truly underground talent on May 1st

A banging Berlina fur Techno free party will be on at Burg Schnabel

✪ On Sunday, Void Club holds a free drum n' bass and techno party, offering a down-to-earth alternative for dancing into May

Hell, even Berghain's garden opening party is free on May Day, but be warned: the usual stress associated with getting in "May" apply.


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